Is blogging really that hard?

Well, is it? Is blogging that hard? This is actually a loaded question because there is no easy answer.

If you’ve never blogged, for example, it can be a little difficult to get started, either because it’s a little intimidating or because of simple procrastination (my own personal experience).

And if you blog regularly, but are a painstaking perfectionist, it can be hard to keep it up as regularly as you might like (again, my own personal experience).

And then I was introduced to a business consultant and prolific blogger by the name of David Fields. When I visited his blog, I discovered a post he wrote called How to be the Stephen King of Consultants.

It could just as easily be called How to Be the Stephen King of Financial Advisors (or Accountants or Lawyers or Widget Makers) because Fields offers 7 universal and very practical tips for attracting more readers and prospects to your blogs (and articles and tweets), starting with this juicy little nugget:

Blogging tip#1: Pick a Topic, Any Topic

Want to know exactly what topic your prospects are hungry to read about? Yeah, so does everyone else. No one knows. A magazine’s editor-in-chief once told me, “I’ve been doing this for 30 years and still can’t predict which articles will take off.” If you knew exactly what to write about, you’d laser focus your writing there. Since you don’t, take a shotgun approach. Quantity and breadth are your friend. In other words, write frequently, and don’t worry so much about choosing the perfect topic.

So stop procrastinating and start writing, because absolutely no one knows which articles or posts will become popular, let alone read. So write. Just write. (And edit, of course, before you publish). And if you think that everything you write has to be wonderful, he has another great tip. Stop shooting for the moon and “shoot for the chandelier”:

Blogging tip #2: Aim Low

As long as we’re spouting aphorisms, have you ever heard this one: “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will still be among the stars.” Well, not only is that scientifically poppycock, it’s foolish writing advice. Aim lower. Much lower. Here’s my substitute saying: “Shoot for the chandelier. Not only are you more likely to hit it, you’ll be rewarded with a satisfying crash of shattering glass.” If you strive to craft every article into a masterpiece worthy of publication in The New Yorker, you’ll quickly become frustrated, overwhelmed, and unproductive. On the other hand, if you merely crank out basic, decent articles, you will quickly accumulate a body of work, enjoy a sense of accomplishment and position yourself to improve.

Aim lower? Much lower? What a low blow! Here I was, thinking that Tony Robbins had it all figured out, and that all of us were born on this earth to awaken the giant within, when maybe there is just a little Hobbit sleeping inside us. And then I started thinking, why not? Why not shoot for the chandelier if it makes the process actionable and doable and thus makes us happy — and perhaps more to the point, makes our readers happy as well?

Another noteworthy piece of advice from Fields is to try and make blogging (or tweeting or commenting) a daily habit. He suggests the best approach to blogging is to bang out fifteen minutes first thing in the morning before the rattle and hum of the business day begins. Admittedly, that doesn’t seem like much time, but I know for a fact that’s all the time he takes.

So there we are.

Are you up for creating your fifteen minutes of fame? Maybe you are and maybe you aren’t. If you aren’t, then at least be truthful with yourself. Maybe you don’t really want the recognition. Or maybe you want to find it in other ways. And that’s fine, too. Where do I stand on blogging? Somewhere in the muddle, I mean middle.

Where do you stand? Is blogging really that hard? I’m curious to know.

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